OTTAWA, Ont. – An arbitrator’s award for long-term care workers employed by Compass Group Canada (Beaver) Ltd., at Montfort hospital’s long-term care facility in Ottawa, is a major victory for some of the lowest paid health care workers in Ontario. The award will mean wage increases of between 32 per cent and 101 per cent for dietary aides, housekeeping aides, laundry aides, cooks, cleaners and maintenance workers.
“This award exposes the ugly underbelly of contracting-out and privatization,” said Jim Flynn, national representative and long-term care coordinator for the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE). “When Montfort hospital contracted out the long-term care facility to Central Park Lodge/Capital Care Corporation, and they in turn contracted out dietary, laundry and housekeeping to Compass Group, the workers ended up on the losing end with low wages and inferior benefits. Now an arbitrator has ruled these workers deserve fair wages and equitable treatment.”
Before the award, wages at the facility were 70 per cent to 100 per cent lower than other health care workers in similar jobs. To give an example, dietary aide wage rates were $8.25 to $10.00 per hour – they will now increase to up to $16.63 per hour. Other contract improvements include:
- Sick leave;
- 10% in lieu of benefits plus holiday pay for part-timers;
- Shift Premium: $0.25;
- Pay for overtime;
- Scheduling by seniority;
- Vacation Pay improvements.
“This is a tremendous victory for Ontario’s working poor, and it sends a strong message to private, for-profit multinational corporations,” said Flynn. “The arbitrator agreed with CUPE that comparisons for these workers should be other health care workers in the nursing home sector.”
For more information, please contact:
CUPE National Representative (LTC Coordinator)
CUPE Researcher (author of arbitration briefs)
CUPE National Representative